Pippa Middleton pictured at lavish Paris fancy dress party hours before 'gun incident'
PIPPA Middleton attended a decadent 18th century-themed fancy dress party in Paris just hours before she was photographed with a man aiming a pistol as he sat at the wheel of a car.
The younger sister of the Duchess of Cambridge was guest of honour at the lavish aristocratic bash thrown by her close designer friend, Arthur de Soultrait.
But the next day Miss Middleton was seen in a car, in which the driver pointed the gun at a photographer taking pictures of her in the French capital.
The 27 year-old could now be questioned by French police after she was photographed with the unidentified man aiming a pistol at a photographer on Saturday afternoon.
Hours earlier she had attended the opulent all-night fancy dress party to celebrate the 30th birthday of the Parisian fashion entrepreneur.
In a series of pictures posted on a public internet site, Miss Middleton is seen smiling and posing with several other female guests gathered around Mr de Soultrait, who is photographed wearing a dog collar and chain while sitting on a gilded throne.
More than 300 guests attended the Friday night party, entitled “Le Roi est Mort, Vive le Vicomte”, which translate as “The king is dead, long live the Vicomte”, including the “cream” of French, English, American and Latin American society.
Hundreds of pictures have since been posted online, showing guests dressed in revealing period costume outfits while also appearing to be enjoying the host’s hospitality.
Others were pictured cavorting with dwarves in dimly lit rooms while also being draped with red velvet curtains.
The festivities, held at the Theatre Saint Germain, central Paris into the early hours, culminated in a woman bursting from a huge fake birthday cake to a remix of God Save the Queen.
Users have since posted a series of comments on the pictures, including one that commended the host’s “delusions of grandeur”.
Miss Middleton was being driven in an Audi convertible to Paris’s Gare du Nord station to board a Eurostar train to London when the incident happened just after 2pm on Saturday.
Detectives have reportedly since received a complaint from a member of the public who saw the driver pointing the gun at a photographer taking the pictures in Paris.
France has strict gun laws and is on a heightened security alert after an Islamic terrorist, Mohammed Merah, used a .45 calibre Colt pistol to murder seven people in the south west of the country last month.
As a freelance photographer took pictures from behind the car, the unnamed driver produced what appeared to be a semi-automatic pistol and closed one eye as he stared down the barrel at the photographer.
Under French law, anyone who “threatens” another with a real or fake weapon can face a prison sentence of five years.
Pictures of the incident taken by a bystander have reportedly been handed to the judicial police, who must decide whether to alert an examining magistrate.
If a magistrate presses ahead with an inquiry, Miss Middleton and the other three people in the car could all face questioning.
Mr de Soultrait, who was a back seat passenger in the Audi, founded and runs Vicomte A, a label that sells sportswear all around the world and is designing the ties for the French Olympic team at the London 2012 Games.
Mr De Soultrait was said by friends to be “mortified” by the incident with the gun, while the man handling the weapon was said to be “keeping a low profile”.
It remains unclear if it was real or fake. Miss Middleton’s spokesman was unavailable for comment.